The Maldives has quickly become one of the world’s most sought-after destinations thanks to its stunning, bright blue waters; world-class diving and snorkeling; ultra-luxurious resorts; and exclusivity.
Located in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives is made up of nearly 1,200 islands and 26 coral atolls making it unparalleled when it comes to sea life diversity.
It’s a remote, tropical paradise, where most of the resorts are situated atop their own private island, giving guests the sense that they too are enjoying their own private escape. Getting to the Maldives is no easy feat, with the average flight from the United States lasting around 27 hours. Visitors land at Velana International Airport in Male and with just one more seaplane ride they’re ready to start the vacation.
For an authentic Maldivian hideaway, guests can book a stay at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, a resort that’s home to 151 stunning villas and suites; 12 award-winning restaurants and bars; and a variety of culturally inspired excursions and experiences.
The main island is linked by a 500-meter bridge to the larger Rangali-Finolhu Island, giving guests the option of two sets of amenities and facilities.
The Conrad Maldives sets itself apart from many of the region’s luxury resorts in that it’s home to many firsts. For starters, it was the first resort to showcase the overwater villas that the Maldives is now famous for.
When it comes to wine, it’s home to the largest wine list in the area and the first underground wine cellar. And then there’s Ithaa, the world’s first-ever underwater restaurant, which boasts 180-degree views of the coral reef garden surrounding the restaurant. Meals come with ever-changing scenery that includes ravenous sharks, rays, turtles, schools of tropical fish and more.
Most recently in 2018, it unveiled the MURAKA, a first-of-its-kind undersea, two-level residence with a master bedroom submerged over 16 feet below sea level. Fun fact? Paris Hilton recently spent part of her honeymoon there.
Surrounded by sparkling water, lush foliage and pristine sand, this property was designed for calm and tranquility. From its unique Over Water Spa that’s literally built over the azure waters of the ocean, to tailored holistic experiences of the Spa retreat, it’s a place of ultimate relaxation and barefooted luxury.
The property prides on honoring the local culture of the Maldives through everything it offers to its guests. From the local ingredients grown on property, to ensuring guests learn about the Maldivian culture through cooking classes and educational excursions, locality is important to the Conrad team.
In efforts to further cultivate guests’ connection to the Maldives, the resort offers eco-activities ranging from coral planting, beach clean-ups and a coral reef regeneration initiative with the resort’s marine biologists.
Conrad Maldives also offers incredible off-property excursions that include Adventure diver certification courses; Day and night scuba experiences; Open water entry-level and advanced certifications; Whale shark tours and more.
“Our resort offers once-in-a-lifetime excursions, taking guests directly from the property into the azure world of the South Ari Atoll, one of the most rich and diverse marine environments in the world,” says Natalia Samper, Resident Marine Biologist at Conrad Maldives from Ocean Group.
“The most popular excursions are the Whale Shark Talk and Tour, Turtle Safari, and Adventure Snorkeling Talk & Tour. These tours are one of the best ways to experience the beautiful aquatic life of the Maldives,” she continues. “The Whale Shark Talk and Tour in particular is a bucket list experience for many guests.”
“Our unique setting provides unparalleled access to the protected South Ari Atoll marine park, the only place in the world that the whale shark can be seen in its natural habitat 365 days of the year.”
Other excursions include fishing, something that has long been a source of income and food for the Maldives. If guests happen to hook a red snapper, white snapper, grouper or barracuda, they’re welcome to bring the catch back for one of the resort’s chefs to prepare it.
“Giving guests a view into Maldivian culture and a taste of island life, we offer the Sunset Fishing and Picnic on Deserted Island tour,” explains Samper. “Guests booking sunset fishing will experience bottom-line fishing in traditional Maldivian style using lines and baited hooks on handheld reels.”
And no matter where you are in the Maldives, you’re in the best place for water sports. The region is only 1% land. The Conrad offers both motorized and non-motorized sports that include off-property adventures like catamaran sailing and glass-floored boat trips. Guests are also invited to kayak; paddle board; wakeboard; windsurf and more. Also on-property are jet skis and water skiing.
And no matter what resort you stay at, the option to island-hop is always a smart way to explore some of the region’s most untouched beaches. Other popular tours in the Maldives include snorkeling around shipwrecks; snorkeling with nurse sharks; walking tours within the capital city of Male and more.
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